Her + His Car Reviews

2021 Kia Seltos SX Turbo AWD

Our car reviews are innovative and interesting as we provide insightful and expert reviews from both Her + His perspectives.

Her: Anne Fleming, Car Buying Advocate, women-drivers.com
His: Don Hammonds, Writer, AutomobileJournal.com 

$29,485 $27,890 base price, $29,485 price as tested
The brand new 2021 with its 1.6 Liter Turbo 4-Cylinder engine is paired to a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT). This AWD has acceptable acceleration with the 175 horsepower and 195 lb.-ft of torque. This newest introduction to the compact utility vehicle segment responds well, brakes responsively and handles overall in a satisfactorily manner. Reliability, one of the biggest criteria when buying a new car, remains open, or undetermined, as this is a new model. This is a CUV meant to be driven for sheer fun. The acceleration is considerably quicker than on comparable vehicles, and the handling is both sporty and stable. Corners are special fun! Braking seems very sensitive for a bit before you get used to the car. Once you get used to it, you're fine.
Fuel Economy
25 city miles, 27 combined miles and 30 highway miles. Really outstanding fuel economy for a CUV in this class. 27 miles per gallon overall; 25 city and 30 highway. The Seltos uses 3.7 gallons per 100 miles. The annual fuel cost over five years is about $1,500, depending on using gasoline costing $2.70 a gallon for 15,000 miles annually for five years.
The Car
The 2021 #KIA Seltos is based on the same platform as the Kona, but with a pinch of design inspiration from Land Rover. Kia's designers kill it as they continue to take a formula of outstanding, innovative design and add value, space and technology. All at a KIA price point and with their industry leading warranty.

Simply put, we love the Kia Seltos. It's a winner. And, while it is in the CUV category, it does prove to have more space than many rivals. The HR-V from Honda, the Mazda CV-30, the Hyundai Kona and the Subaru Crosstrek are all strong competitors, however, what the Seltos has managed to accomplish is deliver much more cargo room and a more spacious second row for passengers. With the rear seats folded flat, there is just shy of 63 cubic feet of packing space - top class. The driver's seat has a 10-way power-adjustable driver's seat for easy, convenient movement.

All models feature a reclining back seat which was put to use when my friend called me as his full-sized mountain bike got a flat tire. I went to pick him up and we easily stored the bike in the back of the Seltos - with no cramping.
Kia is growing to be quite the company to go to for small to large SUVs. Its mid-sized Telluride is astoundingly popular, generously equipped and winning applause for car writers and consumers alike. Meanwhile, its Kia Soul has been popular for years, and gaining new fans annually. The Sportage, though due for a redo, still looks way better than most of its competitors with a very cool, forward thinking design.

But the Seltos? It's a knockout. I can't think of a single thing short of a rather tough to understand audio infotainment system (thanks to whoever drove it before me and took the instruction booklet) --which you really need on the Seltos.
Dual Front Advanced Airbags, Dual Front Seat-Mounted Side & Full-Length Curtain Airbags. Electronic Stability Control. Downhill Brake hill Start assist Control. Forward Collision-Avoidance Assist Ped, Blind-Spot Collision Warning, Blind Spot Collision Avoidance Assist-Rear, Rear Cross Traffic Collision Warning and Avoidance Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, Lane Following Assist, Lane Departure Warning, Driver Attention Warning, High Beam Assist.

Electronic Parking Brake, Smart Key and Push Button Start, Remote Start, Safe Exit Assist. Add in a Five year/60,000 mile roadside assistance program for protection.
Again, an example of a list chock full of standard safety equipment:

Forward-Collision-Avoidance Assist-Pedestrian; blind spot collision warning; Blind Spot Collision avoidance assist in the rear; rear Cross Traffic Collision Warning & Avoidance assist; Lane-Keeping Assist and Lane-Following Assist; Lane Departure Warning; Driver Attention Warning, and High Beam Assist. All of this is in addition to the multitude of standard safety stuff found in every new car and truck these days.
The vehicle is supported by 18" Alloy Wheels, Roof Rails and Fog Lamps, vehicle has an Upgraded Grille with Integrated Led Light Bar, LED Daytime Running Lights and Taillights, Power, heated outside Mirrors w Led Turn Signal Indicators and a Compact Spare Tire.

8" Touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Rear Camera with Dynamic Guidelines. Heated, Front Seats. USB Multimedia Port, Combo Leather-Cloth Seats and Trim, Steering Wheel Contact for Bluetooth, Audio and Cruise Control. 60/40 Folding Seats and Easy-Reclining Rear Seats.

UVO LINK with Navigation and 10.25" Display - comes with 1-year subscription. Dual-Level Cargo Floor. BOSE® premium Audio, SIRIUS XM Radio with 3-month free subscription. 7" LCD Color Instrument Cluster. Smart Cruise Control with Stop and Go. Highway Driving Assist. Electronic Parking Assist. 10-Way Power Drivers Side Seat with Power Lumbar.

Auto Dimming Rearview Mirror, Illuminated Sun visor Mirror, Rear USB Charge Port, Rear Passenger Air Vents, Safe Exit Assist.
There's a pretty generous helping of standard equipment features on our Seltos SX Turbo. They include:

Eight-inch touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple Car Play; Rear camera with dynamic guidelines; eight inch touchscreen/ w Android Auto & Apple Car Play; USB Multimedia port; Heated front seats, combination Sofino Leatherette and The Cloth Seat Trim; leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob; sliding front center armrest; power heated outside mirrors/ with LED Turn Signal Indicators; a compact spare tire; Bose Premium Audio, sound-connected lighting; UVO link with navigation, 10.25 inch display; one year trial for UVO; seven-inch color instrument cluster; smart cruise control with Stop and Go; highway driving assist; rear seat center armrest; remote keyless entry; steering wheel mounted controls (Bluetooth/Audio/Cruise; 60/40 split-folding and reclining rear seats; dual level cargo floor; 18 inch alloy wheels, roof rails; fog lamps; upgraded grille with integrated LED Light Bar; LED Daytime Running lights and taillights; 10-way power driver's seat with power lumbar; smart key and push-button start; remote start on key fob; wireless phone charger, full automatic temperature control; auto-dimming rearview mirror; auto-dimming rear view mirror; LED interior lighting; rear USB charge port; cargo cover and safe exit assist.
Aesthetics & Styling
The 2021 Seltos takes this CUV category by storm with its very impressive design-friendly look, adding a top-class cargo and passenger space, along with high tech technology features and the latest comfort creatures. We even felt like we were in a spa with some new-age sounds to help calm any driver or passenger - but isn't that what KIA designers do? Bring features into the cabin first? We did feel like this helped to mitigate a someone noisy - and boxy - front cabin. But whatever the reason, we thought the new age sounds were innovative. As well as the Land Rover-ish from appeal, at a well under $30K price point.

With KIA's remarkable and industry leading warranty, how can a car buyer do better?

This brand is J.D. Power's #1 Mass Market Brand 5 Years in a Row. It's not hard to see why!
The Seltos manages to look aggressive and contemporary and claiming its own special cues like a two-toned look and a really cool, sporty front end that distinguishes it quite a bit from other cars on the road. But my favorite feature was inside the Seltos: a multi-choice system of ambiance experiences that includes a crackling fire, crunchy snow, a crowded cafe bistro, a rainy day, and a trip to the ocean. Way cool.
10 Year/100,000-mile Limited Powertrain Warranty. Five Year/60,000-mile Limited Basic Warranty; Five Year/60,000-mile Roadside Assistance Program. 10 year/100,000-mile limited powertrain warranty. five year/60,000-mile limited basic warranty; and Five year/60,000-mile roadside assistance program.